Alphavirus E3 spike glycoprotein (IPR002533)

Short name: Alpha_E3_glycop

Overlapping homologous superfamilies


Domain relationships



Alphaviruses are enveloped RNA viruses that use arthropods such as mosquitoes for transmission to their vertebrate hosts, and include Semliki Forest and Sindbis viruses [PMID: 15378043]. Alphaviruses consist of three structural proteins: the core nucleocapsid protein C, and the envelope proteins P62 and E1 (IPR002548) that associate as a heterodimer. The viral membrane-anchored surface glycoproteins are responsible for receptor recognition and entry into target cells through membrane fusion. The proteolytic maturation of P62 into E2 (IPR000936) and E3 causes a change in the viral surface. Together the E1, E2, and sometimes E3 glycoprotein "spikes" form an E1/E2 dimer or an E1/E2/E3 trimer, where E2 extends from the centre to the vertices, E1 fills the space between the vertices, and E3, if present, is at the distal end of the spike [PMID: 8107141, PMID: 9445057]. Upon exposure of the virus to the acidity of the endosome, E1 dissociates from E2 to form an E1 homotrimer, which is necessary for the fusion step to drive the cellular and viral membranes together [PMID: 11301009]. This entry represents the alphaviral E3 glycoprotein. Most alphaviruses lose the peripheral protein E3, but in Semliki viruses it remains associated with the viral surface.

GO terms

Biological Process

No terms assigned in this category.

Molecular Function

GO:0004252 serine-type endopeptidase activity

Cellular Component

GO:0019028 viral capsid
GO:0055036 virion membrane

Contributing signatures

Signatures from InterPro member databases are used to construct an entry.